Burning Man

I'm off on a cross country trip to the Burning Man festival in the Black Rock Desert of northern Nevada. The blog will probably be quiet for the next couple weeks but when I return I will have lots of new work to post...

August's 19th century photograph

Benjamin J. Falk (1853-1925), Portrait of strongman Eugen Sandow (1867-1925) on a bicycle.

Surruralism by Steve Anderson

Charles Lane Press receives submissions from time to time and this particular body of work caught my eye.
They are surrealist photographs made "on the farm". I haven't seen a lot of people working in the surrealist tradition as of late and I was delighted when I looked through Steve's work and saw his unique approach to the genre. I thought I'd share some of his photographs here.



I shot an assignment this past June for People magazine on a very rare neuromuscular disorder called Reflex Sympathetic Disorder. It was a situation where I followed the subject John Roach from the time before, during, and after an "experimental" treatment that he underwent in a hospital in Monterrey, Mexico. John and his wife Rosemary are lovely people and I felt very invested in the outcome of John's treatment and struggle with RSD. John developed the syndrome (which took nearly five years to actually diagnose) after a work related shoulder tear injury. Instead of the pain associated with the tear subsiding, his got progressively worse to where his entire left side was debilitated. RSD affects the skin, muscles, joints, and bones. Just the sensation of air passing over John's hand was extremely painful and he was unable to hold his wife or hug his grandchildren. Having exhausted his treatment options John, with Rosemary's tenacity and persistence enrolled in a treatment program in which other patients with his affliction had found relief. The treatment involves large prolonged doses of the anesthetic ketamine to be administered over the course of several days - a voluntary coma if you will. Because this treatment is not FDA approved John had to seek the ketamine therapy in Mexico where they had just begun the program at a hospital in Monterrey. I also went to Monterrey and was with John and his family prior to his going in the coma and witnessed the hope and fear that this courageous couple had experienced. In what was and could have been an awkward situation as an outsider with a camera - I was made to feel welcome and appreciated. John's treatment lasted for five days and he experienced very intense hallucinations during that time. Only a couple days after John came out of the coma he started to feel better. He returned to the states and when I saw him about three weeks later he was like a new man. The treatment had worked. Though John and Rosemary are taking it one day at a time they have a new future together that at one point seemed so unlikely. It is a hopeful story and I am proud to have had the chance through my editorial assignment work to be a part of it. Unfortunately, I recently heard from Rosemary that John's RSD pain has flared up again-though not as bad as before the treatment. They are very much in my thoughts.
See the story from People here.

John at home May 5, 2009

John and Rosemary May 5, 2009

John at hospital in Mexico May 24, 2009

John and Rosemary at home June 17, 2009


Hayao Miyazaki

Hayao Miyazaki is the greatest living animator today and has a new film titled Ponyo just released here in the U.S. this past weekend. It is a story about a goldfish and a boy who fall in love and how the goldfish wants to become a human being. It is delightful, very sweet, and beautifully animated. Miyazaki is the director and creator of Princess Mononoke, Spirited Away, Howl's Moving Castle, and about a dozen other films that are all treasures. Most all are available on DVD. Miyazaki frequently explores in his films the theme of humans' relationship with nature and how our man made technological world is upsetting the balance of the natural world. His respect towards woman and feminism are revealed by his protagonists who are usually strong, independent girls or women. Despite these heady themes Miyazaki wants us to have fun watching his films and I guarantee that on that he delivers!

Many of Miyazaki's films are hand drawn including Ponyo.



Howl's Moving Castle

Spirited Away



Michael Mazzeo Gallery has a new online exhibition up titled Arbor. It is a curated collection of images to do with trees and quite a lovely show. One of my images happens to be included.

Amanda Friedman Elysian Park #2, 2008


Milton Rogovin

In case you missed it the NY Times had a lovely piece on photographer Milton Rogovin who tuns 100 this December! Milton Rogovin is in my opinion one of the greatest photographers of the past century and had been until recently overlooked by the art establishment. Regardless, Mr. Rogovin's photographs are obviously important as a social document of the American underclass and immigrant communities in the second half of the 20th century but he also runs with the best of them when it comes to making powerful and engaging portraits. I suggest reading this article in the NY Times and checking out the multimedia presentation on Lens Blog. Listen closely to what he has to say about respecting his subjects.

Fred R. Conrad/The New York Times

Milton Rogovin from Lower West Side



2 of my 7 nephews - from summer of 2009

George IV



Craftspeople and Charles Lane Press

Book Making is often a collaborative process. We at Charles Lane Press take great pride in the specialists that we work with. Throughout the editing, scanning, production, and printing of our books we know how important it is to utilize the expertise of the most respected practitioners in each of these fields. This post pays homage to them.

Photographer and Editor of Fall River Boys: Marc Joseph Berg

Our editors help guide our artists with image selection, sequencing, cover choice, and writing copy.

Designer, Filmmaker, and Cake Maker Extraordinaire: Andrew Sloat

Andrew works on the product identity, packaging and presentation of our artists' work. He works closely with our artists'and editors in the sequencing of the material and chooses fonts and typeface.

Color Seperator: Robert J Hennessey

Bob scans our artwork and creates the separated digital files into their component ink values. Which are then used to make the plates we use on press.

Bob commenting on an image from the forthcoming book Outerland by Allison Davies

Production Supervisor:  Bryonie Wise

Bryonie helps guide us through the technical aspects of the printing of our books. She advises the press operator about what inks to add or subtract when we are on press.

Bryonie doing a press check on Fall River Boys

Press Operator at Cantz


Jennifer meets Thor

Photographer Jennifer Boomer emailed me recently to tell me that she encountered the subject of one of my photographs from my project 49 & 50. I met Thor while photographing on an oyster farm in Jakalof Bay near Homer, Alaska last summer. I love it when photography intersects with life in this way. Jennifer's email tells it best - other than Thor remembering incorrectly that I photographed him in Hawaii when it was actually in Alaska!

Hi Richard,

Hope this email finds you well. I have a photo connection that I wanted
to share with you! I just finished-up a 5 month stint in Bristol Bay,
Alaska where I was shooting more fishing community photos. I was
fortunate enough to find a boat ride leaving Naknek in Bristol Bay
heading to Homer with a commercial fisherman friend. The trip is
supposed to take 3 days, buts took us 7. It was a terrific adventure: 4
gill net boats, 16 people and 2 dogs. It took us much longer than
expected due to boat problems, terrible weather and lots of partying.
For 3 days all of the boats were docked at at the head of Illiamna Lake
due to poor weather. On the 2nd day I had major cabin fever decided to
take a hike and another guy in our fleet decided to come along. During
our hike he asked me about my photography and randomly asked me if I had
ever heard of you. Ironically enough, you have photographed him in
Hawaii. His named is Thor. He is now fishing salmon up in Alaska and was
part of my epic 2009 Alaska Adventure! Such a small world!


Jennifer Boomer's work from Dutch Harbor, Alaska is of particular interest to me and quite lovely. Check it out here.

© Jennifer Boomer

© Jennifer Boomer 

Thor   2008    ©Richard Renaldi



looking at/looking for

curated by Massimo Sordi, Stefania Rössl
@ SIFEST 2009 – Photo Festival of Savignano, Italy
11th september-4th october 2009

evan baden (USA)
catherine balet (F)
mathieu bernard-reymond (CH)
michele cera (I)
samantha cohn (USA)
jen davis (USA)
wolfram hahn (D)
alessandro imbriaco/francesco millefiori (I)
seba kurtis (ARG)
molly landreth (USA)
kalpesh lathigra (UK)
maria leutner (D)
andrés marroquín winkelmann (PERU)
colin pantall (UK)
andrew phelps (A)
marion poussier (F)
blerim racaj (UK)
richard renaldi (USA)
frank rothe (D)
carla van de puttelaar (NL)
shen wei (CHINA)


Rebecca Solnit

I am working my way through a fantastic collection of essays by writer, journalist, and activist Rebecca Solnit titled Storming the Gates of Paradise published by University of California Press.

Her writing on the environment, social justice and the American west is heroic, important, and accessible. I highly recommend picking up a copy. In the meantime I have linked to several of her essays on photography: on Susan Sontag, on Western Landscape Photography, on Edward Burtynsky.